On behalf of Weisman, Kennedy & Berris Co., L.P.A. posted in Wrongful Death on Tuesday, May 28, 2013.

Although drivers must be careful to avoid potential hazards on the roads, it is the role of local government agencies in Ohio to ensure that roads are properly maintained. Especially when problems are reported, it is important for officials to take steps to ensure the safety of their roads. In some unfortunate cases, the government’s failure to keep roads clear of obstruction can cause injuries and even death. State and local governments that neglect to maintain safe roads may face wrongful death lawsuits.

The Ohio Department of Transportation had allegedly been aware of a tree that had been leaning over a state road for some time. Unfortunately, the department failed to correct the problem before the tree fell in the road, causing the death of a New Concord woman. The victim was driving with her son, whose age is unknown; he survived the accident but was injured.

If it weren’t for the department’s failure to remove the tree, the victim’s husband alleged, his wife’s death likely would have been prevented. He filed a lawsuit against the Department of Transportation for its failure to keep the road safe, and was ultimately awarded $3.9 million. The settlement covers costs that include the family’s medical expenses and the loss of income that resulted from the woman’s death. The victim’s former occupation is unknown.

Fatal accidents are especially devastating when they are the result of a preventable error. Thankfully, members of victims’ families may be entitled to some compensation through a wrongful death claim. Working with an attorney can be helpful in these circumstances.

Source: Zanesville Times Recorder, “New Concord family gets $3.9 million in wrongful death settlement,” May 23, 2013